Autumn Statement- doom and gloom?

Now we’ve had a day or so to absorb George’s statement and the impact on our personal finances, what does it mean for our businesses in 2013 and beyond?
I’ve commented before about the contagious nature of confidence, and hope that the mutterings about the UK triple A credit rating don’t start a domino-style collapse in this important, but slippery emotion. Low confidence seems to constrain and/or slow decision-making and stops the cash from flowing.
While the revisions of economic growth forecasts to a more pessimistic level is disappointing, I don’t feel there is cause for depression amongst the majority of good small and medium sized businesses, but we may need to adjust our marketing objectives and strategy.
When markets are growing, every supplier can assume that their business should grow in line with the market trend, holding market share and ‘riding the wave’ of increased customer demand. That’s not to say it’s easy of course!
When markets stagnate or contract, then growth can only come from increasing market share and stealing business from competitors. We will need to persuade customers to switch suppliers or share their business differently. And of course, many of our competitors are trying to do the same thing – possibly with us in their sights!
So why the optimism? Well, assuming our markets haven’t shrunk massively; as a small or medium sized business it’s likely that we have a small or very small market share, so there are lots of sales going to lots of competitors that we can target. Equally, there’s statistically a low probability that competitors are targeting us.
Additionally, I did say “good” businesses. The better we meet customer needs relative to our competitors, the easier it becomes to steal market share and the less likely it is that competitors will be targeting us.
So let’s make sure we have relevant competitive advantage, target the share growth we need to achieve and where we think we can achieve it and build a sales and marketing plan for 2013 to make it a reality.
Happy planning,